Galen Institute

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Galen Institute
Galen Institute logo.png
Formation 1995 (1995)
Type Public policy think tank
Grace-Marie Turner

The Galen Institute is a non-profit public policy research organization based in Alexandria, Virginia. Founded in 1995 by Grace-Marie Turner, the Galen Institute's stated mission is "advancing free-market ideas in health policy, promoting a more informed public debate over ideas that support innovation, individual freedom, consumer choice, and competition in the health sector".[1] According to a 2003 profile of the organization from Human Events magazine, the Galen Institute is the "only free-market think tank solely dedicated to...putting individuals rather than corporate or government bureaucrats in charge of health care decisions."[2][dead link]

History and principles[edit]

Founding and early activities[edit]

The Galen Institute was founded by Grace-Marie Turner in 1995 as a response to attempts to reform the United States's health care system in 1993.[2] Their first conference was held a year later, in 1996 on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., and was titled A Fresh Approach to Health Care Reform. The papers presented at the conference were later published into a peer-reviewed volume, titled Empowering Health Care Consumers through Tax Reform. While this opposition was the initial focus of the organization, by the late 1990s Galen focused less on critiquing specific health reform initiatives, and more on advocating against the increasing role of the federal government in the American health sector,[3] proposing changes to existing government proposals,[4] and working to inform the public about the health reform debate.[5]

The Galen Institute receives its funding from donations and grants from corporations, foundations, and individuals both inside and outside the pharmaceutical and medical industries.[6]


The Galen Institute's Logo with Explanation

The Galen Institute is named after Galen, the second century Greek physician who, along with Hippocrates, was one of the first and most influential health figures in the ancient world.

Much like its name, the Galen Institute's logo is also symbolic, representing what the Galen Institute describes as a fundamental problem in the American health sector: a lack of coverage among the middle class. The blue graph in the logo shows the number of Americans who have health insurance coverage; the poorest Americans (on the left side of the graph) are covered through government subsidies and programs such as Medicaid and SCHIP. The wealthiest Americans (on the right side of the graph) are covered through their employers. The group making an average of $30,000 in annual income (the gap in the middle) makes too much to qualify for federal assistance, but too little to have employer-based insurance.[7]

Core beliefs and goals[edit]

According to the mission statement on their website,[8] the Galen Institute's core beliefs are that: "Consumers and their physicians should have authority and responsibility over health care decisions, and the vibrant free market will encourage research and innovation and provide better access to new medical technologies." "A market that supports innovation will lead to lower costs, expanded choice, and increased access to better medical care."

The Galen Institute also states that their key goals are to: "Educate policymakers about the dangers that government control over the health sector pose to our economy and our society." To "reach out through the media to educate the public about the crucial importance of continued innovation to advance medical progress, and to attract new audiences to our message through the use of their newsletter, websites, and a variety of media tools."[9]

Health Policy Consensus group[edit]

The Health Policy Consensus Group, formed in 1993, is an affiliation of health policy experts from various market-based think tanks coordinated and facilitated by the Galen Institute. The Consensus Group began with a focus on increasing public awareness regarding the role of taxes on employment-based health insurance and how these taxes impact the health care system in the United States.[10] Today, the Consensus Group works to promote free-market health solutions through consumer driven reforms,[11] and provides "guidelines for a more efficient and equitable system to help the uninsured" to policy makers and lawmakers.[12]

Health Reform Hub[edit]

In October 2009, the Galen Institute launched the Health Reform Hub, a website that provides a portal to resources concerning free-market health care reform. Including critical analysis from industry leaders and assessments of reforms being considered in Washington D.C. and around the country.[13] The Hub features a daily collection of the latest news articles, commentaries, video clips, radio interviews, and infographics from members of the Galen Institute and opinion leaders in the health sector.

Selected studies and publications[edit]

Media coverage, op-eds and commentary[edit]

The Galen Institute has been featured in a number of major media outlets; including coverage of the organization, submission of op-eds, and commentary from members of Galen and the Health Policy Consensus Group.

Among the print, television, radio and online outlets in which the Galen Institute has appeared are:


  1. ^ "Galen Institute – Mission Statement". January 6, 2012. Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c D'Agostino, Joseph. "Conservative Spotlight: The Galen Institute." Human Events, March 10, 2003
  3. ^ Kerrigan, Karen. "Health reform effort's intent is lost in cost increases," Columbus Business First, December 18, 1998.
  4. ^ a b Bailey, Ronald. "Mandatory Universal Health Insurance?" Reason Magazine, August 6, 2003
  5. ^ Filed As:  Health Care (January 8, 2008). ""The Basics of Health Policy." State Policy Network, January 8, 2008". Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  6. ^ Grace-Marie Turner (Nov 9, 2009). "AARP’s tacit endorsement of Medicare cuts line its pockets, but shortchanges seniors". Janesville Gazette. Retrieved July 10, 2010. 
  7. ^ The Galen Institute – The Galen Institute's Logo Explained[dead link]
  8. ^ Galen Institute – Mission Statement[dead link]
  9. ^ Galen Institute – Key Goals[dead link]
  10. ^ "About The Health Policy Consensus Group." The Heartland Institute, April 1, 2001.
  11. ^ ""Conservative Alliance Outlines 6 Deal-Killers For National Health Reform." Reuters, April 1, 2009". Reuters. April 1, 2009. Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Health Policy Consensus Group | Galen Institute". Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  13. ^ Health Reform Hub – About Us[dead link]
  14. ^ Turner, Grace-Marie. "Costs Keep Rising," The Wall Street Journal, October 27, 2009.
  15. ^ Pear, Robert. "Health Insurance Industry Urges Expansion of Coverage." The New York Times. November 14, 2006.
  16. ^ Pear, Robert. "Medicaid Commission Formed to Tame Program's Growth." The New York Times, July 9, 2005.
  17. ^ Turner, Grace-Marie. "What Happened to a Public Health Plan?: Abandon the Public Plan." The New York Times. August 10, 2009.
  18. ^ "EDITORIAL: No mandate for government health care." The Washington Time, December 18, 2009.
  19. ^ Search Nro. "Turner, Grace Marie. National Review Online: Critical Condition Blog. July 20, 2009 to January 4, 2010". Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  20. ^ Pallarito, Karen. "Health reform package continues to advance,", December 22, 2009.[dead link]
  21. ^ ""CBO: Medicare to Defer $2B in Savings," FOX Business with Stuart Varney, July 27, 2009". May 7, 2011. Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  22. ^ ""'Blue Dog' Dems. Pushing Off Public Option?" FOX Business with Stuart Varney, July 29, 2009". May 7, 2011. Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  23. ^ ""Do Proftis Lead to Better Health Care?" The John Stossel Show, December 17, 2009". Retrieved January 13, 2012. 
  24. ^ Turner, Grace-Marie. "Hoping for a bi-partisan bill," [[National Public Radio, September 22, 2009]
  25. ^ "Experts Weigh In On Plan To Replace Public Option." National Public Radio, December 15, 2009
  26. ^ "Bush Promotes Personal Accounts for Health Care." National Public Radio|National Public Radio's Talk of the Nation. February 1, 2006

External links[edit]